An Unearthly Child (sometimes referred to as 100,000 BC) is the first serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who. It was first broadcast on BBC TV in four weekly parts from 23 November to 14 December 1963. Scripted by the Australian writer Anthony Coburn, it introduces William Hartnell as the First Doctor and original companions; Carole Ann Ford as the Doctor's granddaughter Susan Foreman, Jacqueline Hill as Barbara Wright and William Russell as Ian Chesterton as school teachers. The first episode deals with Ian and Barbara's discovery of the Doctor and his time-space ship TARDIS in a junkyard in contemporary London. The remaining episodes are set amid a power struggle between warring Stone Age factions who have lost the secret of making fire.
The first episode was recorded in September 1963 on 405-line black and white videotape. However, due to several technical and performance errors in the initial recording, creator Sydney Newman and producer Verity Lambert decided to rerecord the episode. A remount was made in October, when subtle revisions were made to the Doctor's characterization.
The launch of Doctor Who was overshadowed by the assassination of John F. Kennedy the previous day. The serial received favourable reviews and the four episodes attracted an average of 6 million viewers.